We found it interesting that the transport plan for the Kirkby stadium project did not include the findings of HOK Sport who were commissioned by Bestway Holdings and Liverpool City Council to assess the Scotland Road site.
To those who do not know, the companies who have featured dismissing the Scotland Road site on the official Everton website; the KSS Design Group, Savills and Steer Davies Gleave are all companies heavily involved with Tesco and Everton for the Kirkby stadium project.
The HOK Sport report, verbatim, states that:
"A stadium to seat 55,000 spectators can be constructed on the site including some of the land to the North-East and South-East of the ramped road to the tunnel. In order to make the site viable it will be necessary to:
• Obtain approval to build over the tunnel approach road
• Build over significant lengths of the tunnel approach road
• Acquire additional land directly adjacent to St Anne Street and the tunnel approach road in order to achieve pedestrian access and circulation and service vehicle access to the front of the stadium.”
The recommended orientation for a football stadium is approximately North-South, however this stadium on this site would be constrained by the site to be orientated with the long axis about thirty to forty-five degrees West of North.
The North-South orientation is recommended to avoid the sun being in the eyes of players in the afternoon. With a larger stadium such as this the tiers are reasonably high and therefore the sun will be blocked at lower elevations."The report also contains a traffic and transportation assessment by WSP Group Engineers, which states:
“Given the location of the site approximately 2km from Goodison and its closer proximity to the City Centre and Liverpool Lime Street Station, providing the necessary off site work is carried out the site appears to be viable however, this will require further work to finalise.”
And goes on to state with regard to pedestrian access:
An acceptable walking distance is generally considered to be 2km, PPG13 states:
“Walking is the most important mode of travel at the local level and offers the greatest potential to replace short car trips particularly under 2 kilometres”.
Liverpool City Centre falls within 2km of the site which presents a real opportunity to utilise this sustainable mode of travel to and from the proposed stadium. The proximity of the Scotland Road site to the City Centre offers the potential for supporter to walk to the site from this location.
The proposed location therefore offers excellent connectivity to Liverpool Lime Street Station, the National Express Coach Station and other facilities present in a City Centre location.